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Tools for Understanding the Extension Multigenerational Workplace

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Presentation on theme: "Tools for Understanding the Extension Multigenerational Workplace"— Presentation transcript:

1 Tools for Understanding the Extension Multigenerational Workplace
Adapted and Development by Dr Dallas L. Holmes, Extension Specialist Diversity and Civil Rights

2 Goals Goals for this diversity discussion are to help Extension educators and leaders: Understand and appreciate age diversity. Learn practical ideas on how to attract, motivate, and keep great employees of all age groups in the Extension organization.

3 Some Statistics The labor force is at the lowest rate since the 1930’s and the US birth rate continues to decline. By 2025, 1 in 5 workers will be over age 55. The slowing of the workforce translates to an estimated shortfall of 20 million workers over the next 20 years. Adapted from: K. Tyler, Neckties to Nose Rings (2002) We will have to make up with productivity, whether it is with people or technology. We should try to keep the best workers because trends show more jobs will be available in the future and less prepared workers.

4 Implications Employers will need to recruit and embrace diversity in the workforce. Companies must welcome retiree-age employees to remain on board and transfer skills. Adapted from: K. Tyler, Neckties to Nose Rings (2002)

5 Implications The fastest-growing occupations across developed nations are knowledge based, meaning the position requires formal education or advanced training. Given that knowledge is a scare resource; Extension must capitalize on it by inviting and nurturing the best people. Adapted from: K. Tyler, Neckties to Nose Rings (2002) The implication is that there must be an investment in continuing education.

6 Understanding Generations
Never before has there been a workforce and workplace so diverse in race, gender, and ethnicity. (Zemke, et al., 2000) We have four generations working side-by- side in the Extension organization for the first time in history. All have unique experiences and attributes which influence their attitudes towards work. Adapted from: Recognition Management Institute, 2000 Companies that do not value people will end up losers in the new economy. Yet we are dealing with people in an old school, “we know best” way. The focus is on short-term results and to see people as expenses rather than as an investment.

7 Understanding Generations
A group of people defined by age boundaries Those who were born during a certain era and share similar experiences growing up. They have common cultural or social characteristics and attitudes. Their values and attitudes, particularly about work-related topics, tend to be similar, based on their shared experiences during their formative years. Adapted from: Recognition Management Institute, 2000

8 Understanding Generations
Psychologists, sociologists, and everyday managers have identified important differences between these generations in the way they approach work, work-life balance, employee loyalty, authority, and other important issues. Notter Consulting, 2002

9 Understanding Generations
Some differences can be attributed to individual differences, such as levels of experience, levels of financial and family commitments, depth of personal development, political awareness, and emotional maturity. Source: It is also important to note that some differences… However, there is much evidence to support differences due to the sharing of common experiences by each generation that shaped their values also. In other words, the break is significant around major events. However, there were major events shared by each generation that shaped their values also.

10 Understanding Generations
A lack of understanding across generations can have detrimental effects on communication and working relationships and undermine effective services. Dittmann, Generational Differences at Work, June 2005 Generational context may affect the way we work. Intergenerational conflict in the workplace may keep plans, products, and ideas from moving forward.

11 Generations by Year of Birth
Researchers have divided today’s workforce into four generations: Seniors, Veterans, Matures Baby Boomers Generation Xers, Twenty-somethings, Baby Busters Millennials, Generation Y’s

12 Number in USA workforce
Statistics Generation Type Number in USA workforce Seniors/Veterans 42 million Baby Boomers 76 million Generation Xers, Twenty-somethings, Baby Busters 54 million Millennials, Generation Y’s Source: Remson, Triangle Consulting (2006) 75 million

13 Major Events That Affected Values of Seniors
Great Depression- Sacrifice and hard times World War II Social Security Mandatory Industrialization Korean War

14 Major Events That Affected Values of Boomers
TV Civil Rights Movement Protests Rock and Roll Charismatic Leadership Baseball Heroes Larger than life politicians and Movie stars

15 Major Events That Affected Values of Gen-Xers
Man on the Moon Challenger Explosion Aids Video Games Latchkey Upbringing Personal Computers Political Scandal – Tell all biographies Repentant Religious leaders

16 Major Events That Affected Values of Millenials
Internet- Technological integration Fall of Berlin Wall O. J. Simpson & Casey Anthony Trials Columbine and Norwegian Shootings September 11th Tragedy Iran and Afghanistan Wars- Global perspectives Some economic prosperity- Market melt downs

17 Valuing Generational Differences
Valuing Generational Differences Recognition Management Institute – Saunderson (2000) Veterens Boomers Gen-Xers Millennials Loyal Honors/Respects authority Follows Orders Formal Rewards later Practical Personal Sacrifice Civic Duty Optimistic Responsible and Dedicated Team player Workaholic Personal gratification The “Me” Generation Material Acquisition Adaptable to change Techno-literate Self-starters Global mindset Informal Skepticism Self Preservation Individuality The “ Not Impressed” generation Goal-oriented Techno-savvy Collaboration and Achievement important Moral mindset Social activism More impatient Entrepreneurial Uniqueness More independent Prefers structure Technology-challenged Set in ways Difficulty with change Enjoys much recognition Elder care absences Self-gratification Skeptical Feel others owe them Motivation Child care absences Requires supervision and support Sociable Strengths It is not good to make general assumptions on the basis of one size fits all. There are people within every generation who have similar values. However, research has revealed some strong common values among the different generations. Problems

18 Family Life and Values

19 The Generations at Work

20 Attitudes about work…

21 Leadership and Authority
Traditionalist   Hierarchy - Leadership   Respectful - Authority Baby Boomer  Consensus - Leadership  Love Hate - Authority Generation X  Competence - Leadership  Unimpressed - Authority Millennials Teamwork – Leadership Respectful. but autonomous

22 We Have a Problem! Issues of: Retention Recruitment Productivity Employee Satisfaction Customer Satisfaction If problems are ignored or are not adequately addressed, then you may have problems in these areas.

23 Why Do People Do What they Do
Why Do People Do What they Do? Adapted from Recognition Management Institute – Saunderson (2000) History Culture Values, Beliefs Other…? According to Saunderson (2000) Recognition Management Institute Beliefs Behavior Results

24 Commonalities Employees of all generations have one thing in common. They need one good reason they should put their full faith in any one company. Trust is common, no matter the age. Adapted from: K. Tyler, Neckties to Nose Rings (2002)

25 Dealing With Generational Differences
Bridging Differences Identify values Assess value differences Acknowledge implications Change behaviors Communicate needs Build on commonalities Accept differences Tap into motivations Manage Differences Set clear goals Share a common purpose Expect mutual accountability Give real recognition Adapted from: Recognition Management Institute, 2000 According to Saunderson (2000), we should try to understand workplace differences, by identifying and assessing value differences, acknowledging implications, and then changing behaviors. We should try to bridge differences by communicating needs, building on commonalities, accepting differences, and tapping into motivations. Finally, we should manage differences by setting clear goals, sharing a common purpose, expecting mutual accountability, and giving real recognition.

26 Recruiting Tips Find out what motivates them
Find out what would cause them to leave the organization Treat them as they want to be treated People work for people not a company Hire the best person for the job Equip people with the necessary skills Adapted from: Recognition Management Institute, 2000 People are individuals first. Are we treating them as such? Are we considering their preferences and differences?

27 Employee RetentionTips
Make more time for orientation of new people Communicate goals clearly Demonstrate respect for the lives of others outside of the workplace Adapted from: Recognition Management Institute, 2000

28 Recognition Tips Recognition is personal. Find out preferences for type of recognition. Recognition is about people and relationships, not things. Learn to say and show “thank you” in many different ways. Demonstrate that you trust people Making time for recognition is simply a choice. Adapted from: Recognition Management Institute, 2000 Get to know people. It is the little things that count the most. Recognize the doing and celebrate what gets done.

29 Retention Tips Ask people how they learn best.
When people ask for the tools to do their work, give them the tools. Provide the latest technology as monies permit. Expect, plan for personal and professional development. Communicate about how well they are doing and where they can improve. Set goals and help with the plan to achieve them. Adapted from: Recognition Management Institute, 2000 Keeping employees is a daily task. Share knowledge and experiences to unite people.

30 References Dittmann, (June 2005). Generational Differences at Work.
Notter Consulting (2002). Generational Diversity in the Workplace. Tyler, K. (2002). Neckties to Nose Rings: Earning the trust of a Multi- Generational workforce: Remson, D. (2006). Thriving in the Multi-generational Workplace. Saunderson, R. (2000). Managing Generational Differences in the Workplace, Recognition Management Institute. Other Sources David Remson’s, November 2006 Brenda L. Romano, Managing Generations, International Builders Exchange Executives.

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